Chicken, beef, and rabbit meat produced in a laboratory is the innovation of Memphis, the company that aspires to commercialize it.
This new meat is presented as an alternative to animal sacrifice. / Photo: Memphis Meats
The Woman Post | Maria Lourdes Zimmermann
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Leer en español: ¿Le daría carne hecha en laboratorio a sus hijos?
A few years ago, an urban myth about one of the world's largest fast-food companies was spreading rapidly in street conversations.
Those who considered themselves opponents of the American food chain claimed that for their hamburgers, they produced meat made in laboratories; monsters fed in a cultivator with no eyes, legs and tail. A piece of muscle that was later converted into hamburgers and consumed without anyone knowing its true origin and traceability.
How far was that myth from reality? The company, subject to gossip, surely had nothing to do with the scientific and biotechnological advances that today promise to feed thousands of people by making cell-based meat.
The question that assails any consumer is: Would you give laboratory-made meat to your children?
Memphis, a San Francisco Bay-based company, is currently developing methods of producing meat directly from animal cells, without the need to breed or slaughter them.
The company produced its first cell-based meatball in February 2016 and the first cell-based poultry in March 2017.
The way to produce it is not a secret, Memphis details the whole process in a simple and basic way in four steps that start in a cell. "We focus on identifying and selecting specific types of cells that can renew and grow to become meat," explains the company.
"You are what you eat, and so are cells, so we unpack food into the most essential micronutrients, necessary for our cells to grow and develop." "We can ensure the highest level of purity and achieve the perfect composition, down to a molecular level," they clarify.
And that's when the company explains how cells follow a natural process that allows muscles and connective tissues to form just like any other animal that is properly fed and its muscle mass grows as a result of that cycle. All the above process is carried out in a "cultivator" adds Memphis.
The cultivation process lasts between 4 and 6 weeks, when this ends, it is simply harvested from the cultivator and is ready to enjoy!
Since its inception, the company has argued that developing meat in cells is "essential" because it focuses on efficiency, simplicity, and quality, while eliminating unnecessary steps. "We don't need to raise and process animals or use large amounts of land and water. We make meat in the purest sense of the word: simple ingredients, clean conditions, minimal impact. ”
The company's advertising shows influencers from around the world, consuming their meats in healthy and colorful dishes, even knowing that their way of production is different, revolutionary and innovative. Would you consume it with your family?
A giant ready to jump
The company has managed to grow rapidly, in 2018 they announced their union with Tyson Foods, but it was already known that Bill Gates and Richard Branson among others were investors in the company.
The next step is to bring their products to the market after years of lobbying and alliances.
They recently unveiled their success in the latest $ 161 million investment round. This activity marks the largest funding moment in the history of the cell-based meat industry, and will likely enable Memphis Meats to reach the historic milestone of bringing their products to consumers. In total, the company has raised more than $ 180 million.
The Series B round was led by SoftBank Group, Norwest, and Temasek. New and existing investors including Bill Gates, Richard Branson, Threshold Ventures, Cargill, Tyson Foods, Kimbal Musk, Fifty Years, and CPT Capital will also join the round.
This round extends the Memphis Meats coalition to Asia, which is a strategically valuable market for cell-based meat and faces significant challenges in meeting the growing demand for meat.
The company intends to use the funds to build a pilot production facility, grow its equipment, and bring products to the world market. And while they have yet to announce a release date, they continue to work with regulatory agencies to ensure a safe and timely moment.
"I am proud to once again invest in Memphis Meats," the world's leading cell-based meat company, "says Richard Branson. "In the coming decades, I believe that cell-based meat will become an important part of our global meat supply." I can't wait for that day! affirms the millionaire.